We all know that effective parent communication is an essential part of being a teacher. It not only helps build strong relationships with parents and guardians, but it also promotes a positive learning environment for students. Even still, it can be one of the hardest parts of being a teacher. It can be awkward and sometimes involves conflict (as an Enneagram 9 this is definitely not my fave 😅). That’s why I had to change my mindset about parent communication. I’ve learned to see it as an opportunity, not an obligation, to partner with parents. They are your partners in educating their children in the best way possible! So let’s create the best partnership possible!
Take a look at these six parent communication tips. I hope they help you reset your communication systems and feel excited about partnering with parents.
1. Start with a positive contact.
A negative report is not the best start to a parent partnership. A positive interaction (even if it can’t be the first interaction) creates relational equity.
2. Utilize multiple methods of communication.
Not all parents will prefer the same method of communication. Utilize a variety of methods like email, phone, text, newsletters, in-person meetings, etc.
3. Log all communication.
Use a spreadsheet or contact log to track parent communication. Make sure to take a few notes about the conversation and what was discussed. Make a note to follow up with the parent if necessary.
4. Set aside time each week for parent contact.
Maybe it’s the first ten minutes after school is out each day or for an hour every Wednesday. Having a consistent time and routine will ensure you stay on top of effective parent communication.
5. Don't be afraid to overcommunicate.
More is better. With parents, there is no such thing as overcommunication. A quick weekly email with information about what’s upcoming will keep everyone on the same page.
6. Batch communication.
Batching allows you to get into a rhythm. Make similar calls in one sitting or write similar emails at one time using a template.
For more tips on becoming a more efficient teacher, check out this post on general time-saving tips.